The Professor Is In Book Summary - The Professor Is In Book explained in key points

The Professor Is In summary

Karen Kelsky

The Essential Guide To Turning Your Ph.D. Into A Job

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What is The Professor Is In about?

The Professor Is In (2015) lays out the challenges faced by graduate students seeking employment and offers pragmatic advice on how to better the chances of landing an academic position in an increasingly competitive market.

About the Author

Karen Kelsky is a former tenured professor and department head. She left academia to start The Professor Is In, a business that offers advice on how to thrive in the world of academia.

Table of Contents
    Key idea 1 of 9

    Changing financial circumstances have made pursuing an academic career difficult.

    An academic career can be highly rewarding. But studying at a recognized university has become extremely expensive, and so a life in academia might also mean a life in debt. Here’s why:

    Under financial pressure caused by a decrease in public funding, American universities have had to increase public university tuition. As a result, more and more students graduate deep in debt.

    Public colleges, too, have raised their tuition fees. From 2008 to 2014, the annual inflation-adjusted tuition at public colleges went up by 27 percent, an overall average increase of $1,850. In Arizona and California, tuition fees rose by more than 70 percent!

    And so, during the last few years, student debt has also increased drastically. In 2012, the average debt for a fresh graduate was $29,400 – 25 percent higher than the average debt in 2008. In 2014, the average graduate’s debt was $57,600.

    What happened? Mainly, it comes down to the state’s spending less on higher education. Between 2008 and 2013, for instance, spending dropped by 28 percent.

    Additionally, during the last few years, universities have concentrated on hiring administrative personnel like deans and provosts, rather than hiring teachers. According to the US Department of Education, the number of administrators hired by colleges and universities between 2001 and 2011 was 50 percent greater than the number of instructors hired.

    The sad reality is that teaching work is mostly assigned to hired adjuncts who get paid as little as $1,800 per month for instructing university classes. On top of the paltry pay, most academics at universities end up working in less-than-desirable circumstances.

    Furthermore, in 2013, only 25 percent were on a permanent tenure track – something especially problematic for graduate students towing hefty debts.

    So graduate students face an uphill battle when it comes to finding a job. And most of them don’t even know it! In the next blink, we’ll shed some more light on the situation.

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    Who should read The Professor Is In

    • Aspiring academics
    • Graduate students
    • Anyone pursuing an academic career

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